Wow! What a wonderful and blessed night I spent with my beautiful sister last night. Thanks to the thoughtfulness of some great friends, Cheryl and I had the opportunity to get tickets to see Steven Curtis Chapman in concert for a benefit serving the Mid-Cities Pregnancy Center here in the Dallas area. It was an awesome night of worship with Mr. Chapman and also a night where my heart and eyes were opened to an increasingly growing problem everywhere. The Mid-Cities Pregnancy Center exists to help women who face an unplanned pregnancy. The center exists to help women weigh all their options and they provide counseling with the truth behind abortion and the aftermath of such a decision, as well as the benefit of adoption and even raising the child themselves. It is a wonderful organization doing amazing things and you can find more information at their website at www.mcpregnancy.org.
In addition to learning more about the pregnancy center, the night was full of song after song by Steven Curtis Chapman alone on the stage with just his guitar or sitting at his keyboard. I love acoustic music, but worship acoustic style is so amazing, especially from such a gifted artist as Mr. Chapman. The thing that made this night that much more amazing is the testimony behind the recent loss of Mr. Chapman's 5-year-old adopted daughter, Maria Sue Chapman. For those of you who are unaware the Chapman family lost Maria Sue in a tragic accident on May 21 at their home in Tennessee while celebrating the engagement of Steven's eldest daughter, Emily and the high school graduation of his eldest son, Caleb. Because of what the Chapman is going through and will continue to walk through, my sister and I could relate to everything he shared.
Steven came out and sat at the keyboard explaining that although this was not his first performance since his little girl died, it was the first without his band there to back him up and for him to "hide" behind. He went on to say that in the last 2 months every song he has written and sung over the years has taken on a whole new meaning...and then he expressed that there is one song in particular that he will be singing at each concert he gives moving forward. That wonderful song is "Blessed Be Your Name," such a beautiful song of worship for our Savior King, Jesus Christ. It is so true though, all the words to that song become so much more deeper and so much heavier when you experience a tragic loss (such as the unexpected death of a child). How hard it becomes to sing "you give and you take away, my heart will choose to say, Lord blessed be your name." And, "every blessing you pour out I'll turn back to praise, when the darkness closes in Lord still I will say...Blessed be your name." It was a beautiful beginning to a wonderful night and in that moment I knew this was going to be a tearful night.
Throughout the evening Mr. Chapman filled it with prayer, music, and stories about his precious daughter and the wisdom his son shared in a radio interview only a few weeks earlier. Caleb (Steven's eldest son) shared that the reason the family has such faith is because of this tragedy, they know that there is something greater than themselves and this world to believe in, to hope in, and without suffering there would be no reason for faith. This is such a beautiful family and Steven really conveyed how genuine he is during the night and how grateful the family is for all the prayers and love that have been sent their way in the last two months.
So many stories were shared last night, really more than I could share here, but last night's concert turned into just an amazing time of reflection for me today. I spent the morning visiting Steven Curtis Chapman's website and the blogs of his family and crew. I leave you with the link to his Official Website. When you have time please visit it and see how amazing this family is and the amazing work they are doing to reach the world and help others in the arena of adoption.
I love you all and for all the prayers and support that have gone out to my family over the last 4 months...I am forever grateful and truly blessed!
Steven Curtis Chapman website: www.stevencurtischapman.com